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Anyone ever flown with Air France? This is my rant.

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Anyone ever flown with Air France? This is my rant.

Old 04-26-05, 11:16 PM
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Anyone ever flown with Air France? This is my rant.

My wife, daughter (16 months old) and I rencently went to the UK from Australia. We flew with Singapore Airlines for the first part of the journey (7 hours) and Air France for the second (12 hours). Since babies don't get their own seats and my daughter was too large for the bassinette (sp?). I asked the crew on Singapore Airlines if there was any chance we could get a spare seat for the toddler. The steward rushes around for about 5 minutes then comes back to tell us he's moved some other passengers around and that we can have the extra seat next to us. Sweet. So my daughter has a great time in her own seat. No stress, no hassles. We get regular runs from the flight staff with hot face towels and drinks.
We then stop in Singapore for a couple of hours to get our boarding passes and get on an Air France flight. While getting the boarding passes we find out that I don't actually seem to be on the flight. Even though I have a ticket. They have to rebook me and can't actually get me a seat next to my wife. I don't have time to argue with them since boarding of the plane starts in 5 mins. So I have to sit a couple seats behind my wife and daughter, in the middle of some smelly French guys who sleep through the entire 12 hour flight, so I have to wake them up everytime I have to pee or get up for my daughter. I actually got shushed by one of the passengers cause I was whispering to my wife about where the change bag and stuff were. Anyway, we don't get any regular visits from the crew. It seems like they've all fallen asleep for several hours and only get up for the meals. So I'm wandering around waiting for the toilets to free up, and I notice a passenger filling up his own drink at this little section of the plane. Near the door, between the different sections of the plane and hard to see cause there was a curtain in the way. I walk over and it looks like the crew have set up a self service bar. No alcohol mind you. Just soft drinks and juice. Pretty shoddy performance overall but I figured it was a one off thing.
On the way back from the UK we had Air France for the first leg of the trip and then Singapore after that. While getting my boarding pass in the UK (for Air France) they tell me they can't get me a seat next to my wife. I'm pretty pissed off now, I've got the time to get huffy with them. They get me a seat directly behind my wife so that we both have aisle seats, and end up turning a blind eye to the fact that I'm about 15kgs over with my luggage.
Once again though, same shoddy service on the plane, and instead of letting us have our pram back at Singapore (which I asked them to do, AND double checked with them) they end up sending it with the rest of the big luggage all the way to Sydney. We had a 6 hour stay in the airport at Singapore and found it extremely difficult without the pram.
Then we got back on to the Singapore Airlines flight, and they gave us an extra seat on request, and their service was impeccable.

I'll never fly Air France again. Anyone else have a bad expericence with them?
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Old 04-26-05, 11:34 PM
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No, but the Singapore Airline sounds like a good idea if I ever have the chance. (IIRC they were rated well awhile back for airlines, though I can't recall for certain)

-pedagogue
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Old 04-26-05, 11:43 PM
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I flew Air France a couple years ago--by far the best flight I've ever had. Of course I was flying TO France, so maybe that had something to do with it...
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Old 04-26-05, 11:46 PM
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Well, the French tends to be... you know.

But seriously, it sounded like a stressful trip, enjoy knowing that it's over. Some crews are more accomodating than others. My sister is hard of hearing, and when she was boarding her plane alone, she asked the stewardess to lead her to her coach seat, the stewardess took her to the front row in the first class section. Thought that was pretty nice of her. Airline was either Delta or AA.
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Old 04-26-05, 11:54 PM
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The only airlines I try to avoid are aer lingus (that whole strike back in 2002 really pissed me off...and left me stranded in a foreign country), and Ryan Air because they gouged me for the tickets to get out of said country. F' them both.

I've had excellent experiences with Continental (my preferred provider), Delta, and Southwest (purely for them being cheap. I'm use to the stuff that comes along with using SW)

-pedagogue
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Old 04-27-05, 12:04 AM
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must avoid French bashing........
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Old 04-27-05, 12:56 AM
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Singapore Airline, Malaysian Airlines and Thai Airways are the best way to fly.They take good care of the customers and try to accomodate as much as they could.I tried flying Japan Airlines and it was not worth the price.I rather fly with the other 3 anytime
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Old 04-27-05, 01:34 AM
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Yeah, I have only heard good things about Singapore Airlines even though I haven't flown with them. I am on a training course for an airline, hope I don't get to disappoint when I get to fly!
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Old 04-27-05, 01:50 AM
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I'm assuming the Air France leg was a night flight?

That's very typical of night flights, cabin crew are low key, drinks are out for people to use as they please, and no serving to allow people to sleep.

Sounds pretty normal to me.

I always make sure to select my seats either when booking the flights or via online checkin.
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Old 04-27-05, 03:16 AM
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Meh. Its a fully booked flight. It happens. You could always buy a seat for your daughter if you demand special treatment. Also, Your odds of getting adjoining seats are much better if you don't try and get a boarding pass 5 minutes before boarding.
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Old 04-27-05, 04:42 AM
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Doesn't sound bad at all. Perhaps they shouldn't allow babies on board at all, they disturb other passengers. And NOT serving alcohol is always a good thing especially if there's children.
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Old 04-27-05, 08:30 AM
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Originally Posted by ddd
Perhaps they shouldn't allow babies on board at all, they disturb other passengers.
Buhahahah! You're so in for it. I do hope you have 12 kids for that one
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Old 04-27-05, 08:46 AM
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you get there 5 minutes before boarding and complain you can't have seats next to each other? what are they supposed to do, move others just so you can sit next to your wife?

here is a tip, next time do your own seat assignments on the internet as soon as you buy your tickets
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Old 04-27-05, 09:12 AM
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Originally Posted by BadlyDrawnBoy
Sounds pretty normal to me.
In a "I'm an American so I deserve preferential treatment and I'm going to whine if I don't get it" sort of way.
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Old 04-27-05, 10:05 AM
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Originally Posted by BadlyDrawnBoy
I'm assuming the Air France leg was a night flight?

That's very typical of night flights, cabin crew are low key, drinks are out for people to use as they please, and no serving to allow people to sleep.

Sounds pretty normal to me.
Sounds about right to me as well. And I actually prefer it that way. If you really need someone just ring them.

And if you did in fact check in 5 minutes before boarding, well ...
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Old 04-27-05, 10:07 AM
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Yeah, sorry, but the OP sound like he's complaining for little to no reason. What happened to him sounds like a minor inconvenience, at worst.
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Old 04-27-05, 10:13 AM
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Maybe it's because I'm accustomed to large airports like Orlando International, BWI, and Reagan, but checking in 5 minutes before boarding seems hella stupid.

Also, who doesn't get their seat assignments online before actually showing up to the airport? Especially for an overseas flight?

And why don't babies get there own seats?
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Old 04-27-05, 10:53 AM
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Ahh lovely Air France. Many people at my company refuse to fly them ever again. Way too many stories about lost luggage. I've flown them twice, once to France, then switched to another carrier to my final destination, the other time from Paris to Miami.

My first flight from France to Miami was delayed 3 hours. They were nice an provided some mini sandwiches for us. Of course when we first arrived they didn't say anything about a delay, and each time the flight was due to arrive any time. Come on, the flight already took off from Miami, and was going to turn around, you know the ACUTAL time the flight is due to arrive. There was no reason why you couldn't give out a real estimate.

Then when we finally board, my first seat was completely broken (aisle). So they move me to a middle seat that is only slightly better. Basically the recliner was broken, so just sitting back would fully recline the seat no matter what. I asked for yet another seat, but this was the best one free. I counted 12 different "broken" seats on this flight.

My flight a few years later to France was better. The crew was rude, but at least my seat worked and I didn't lose my luggage.

Of course it was after my second flight I learned the way to avoid Air France. My company doesn't allow us to refuse to fly on a certain carrier, however we can tell them that we can't fly to certain countries. So magically I'm not allowed into France anymore.
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Old 04-27-05, 11:26 AM
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I flew Air France last year.. it was alright.. other then the crew was somewhat rude.. (the stewardess did not even acknowledge me when i tried to hit on her ..... bitch!)
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Old 04-27-05, 11:28 AM
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Originally Posted by Oraphus
I flew Air France last year.. it was alright.. other then the crew was somewhat rude.. (the stewardess did not even acknowledge me when i tried to hit on her ..... bitch!)
Next time let me know, I'll teach you a few pick up lines in french.
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Old 04-27-05, 11:59 AM
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Originally Posted by uberjoe
And why don't babies get there own seats?
Because he didn't pay for a ticket. Up to a certain age kids can fly free sitting on their parent's lap.
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Old 04-27-05, 12:46 PM
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I flew Air France from Mumbai to Chicago via DeGaulle. The stewerdess that we had was rude and people were smoking like chimneys.

The funny thing about this thread is that Forbes just highlighted Air France as the most profitable international airline company.
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Old 04-27-05, 02:19 PM
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I find it funny that people say I lost my luggage or people were rude. On over 20+ airlines that I have flown every single one has had a rude employee at one time and I am sure that every single airline, period, has lost luggage. But bitching about showing up 5 minutes before a flight (who the hell shows up 5 minutes before a domestic flight-much less international-and assume everything is okay) is ridiculous. Also, people cheap out on a ticket but then expect to get an extra seat?
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Old 04-28-05, 02:12 AM
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Sort of agree that the story shows Singapore airlines is above average quality for providing service beyond what you paid for, but that doesn't mean Air France is a bad airline for not providing the same service.

As for the pram, that certainly could have went better, but again, not handling a special request well does not mean the standards of service are necessarily bad.

As for Air France, I always thought their food was not so good.
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Old 04-28-05, 02:31 AM
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Just flew on a Delta flight from Atlanta, GA to Frankfurt Germany. A late flight, so I didn't really expect stewardesses going up and down the aisles all night, but when I hit the service button (2 consecutive times mind you) instead of asking me what I wanted, they simply remotely turned off the light. And while I think that warm towels are a nice bonus on a trip (not necesarily to be expected) - the wet nap that they provided us instead was irritating. I know that we left from Atlanta, but it's not like we were eating ribs while boarding...
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